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Rumors about a true successor to the FD RX-7 have been kicking around automotive circles since... oh, just about exactly when the car left the world for good way back in 2002. While it could be argued that the Mazda RX-8 is a spiritual progeny of the Zoom-Zoom kingdom's white night, the four-door sports car doesn't quite stack up to its curvaceous predecessor. It would seem that Autocar is doing its best to keep the flame alive for the return of the RX-7, this time with – gasp – a new set of leaked details from an insider close to the project. Consider us stunned.

According to Autocar, the project could yield a car much closer to the original RX-7 recipe by as early as 2013. Supposedly – and stop us if you've heard this one before – the company is working on a new rotary mill to be used with an electric turbo for a little extra grunt. With the RX-8 on its way out the door and no word of a replacement on the horizon, it would seem only fitting for Mazda to be working on something rear-wheel drive with a Wankel at its heart, but given the lack of hard sources and solid details, we're going to have to take this one with a jumbo-sized side of skepticism.

[Source: Autocar]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      LOL! I caught myself reading this article in a "whisper", like Autoblog was really telling us a secret. LOL!
      • 4 Years Ago
      I think $45k would be an acceptable price, anything cheaper will be too compromised, and anything more expensive is going to be too expensive for the market.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Oh baby!!! I can't wait!!! My 3rd Gen is getting a bit long in the tooth!


        • 4 Years Ago
        Feelin' jealous.

        It may be getting a little old, but that last gen RX 7 was a beautiful design. They've kept their value remarkably well, too.

        My fear with a new design is that it won't live up to that last gen design.

        Nice car you've got there.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I may be a sucker for these stories, but that doesn't make my interest wane any when another pops up. So here I am, still ready for another RX. Do it, Mazda.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Slim down that smile, and I'll take it
        • 4 Years Ago
        oops, please ignore this
      • 4 Years Ago
      Whenever you hear "electric turbo" don't even bother repeating the story.

      The math doesn't work. It takes too much electricity to generate the energy required to pressurize an engine, you'd need a huge alternator to make the electricity, it just doesn't work out. You'd just skip the larger alternator and large motor and make a direct mechanical connection, making it a mechanically driven supercharger.

      This stuff is by and large made up by fanboys.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Yes, turbochargers are superchargers, that's what I wrote "mechanically-driven supercharger".

        No, electric superchargers is not realistic nor effective. See my post above.

        Recover energy that would have gone through the wastegate? Wastegates are used on turbochargers, and if you spill the exhaust instead of running it over the turbine you don't save any energy that would be been used by a mechanical or electrical supercharger, because those don't use the energy in the exhaust at all.
        • 4 Years Ago
        whatever happened to Thomas Knight Engineering, the electric supercharger? basically a 2nd battery and some capacitors to run a starter-motor/compressor. it was good for like 15 second blasts, but never caught on. the concept is good, and with advancements in battery and motor tech there could be a market for it if there was real money behind the idea. sure it's not for an endurance event and mostly for straight line blasts but.... http://www.boosthead.com/home.php
        • 4 Years Ago
        What? Are you arguing against the terminology or the technology? No matter what drives the compressor, it's still a supercharger. A "turbocharger" is technically a turbine driven supercharger. Calling this technology an electric turbo is no less correct than calling a turbine driven supercharger a turbo in the first place.

        As for the technology... Driving a supercharger with both a turbine and an electric motor is very realistic and very effective. Compared to a turbine driven supercharger, it can improve boost at low flow, dramatically improve response. and recover a bunch of energy that would have been wasted through a wastegate.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "A 'turbocharger' is technically a turbine driven supercharger."

        This is why I'm campaigning to call belt-driven superchargers "beltochargers"! ;-D

        I suppose electric-motor-driven superchargers could be called "electrochargers" or better yet, "motochargers".
        • 4 Years Ago
        "No, electric superchargers is not realistic nor effective. See my post above."

        You're mostly right about that point. A purely electrically driven supercharger is not very practical for automotive applications. They are certainly possible and could theoretically be useful in certain unusual applications, but I've never seen them used for anything other than tests.

        But to question an electric supercharger is a far cry from your first statement discounting electric turbos. A supercharger driven by both a turbine and an electric motor, as I described above and as is often called an electric turbo, is a very realistic and effective device. They haven't been used much in production yet due to cost, but they're sure to get there. Here's a technical paper from over a decade ago on the subject: http://www.osti.gov/bridge/servlets/purl/827803-zQZq3S/native/827803.pdf
      • 4 Years Ago
      As an Rx7 owner, I can say that this is good news if its true. I would like to see what they come up with. I have a feeling though flip up headlights won't be a part of the equation seeing that they have been dropped from every car that has had them. They were a trait of the Rx7 just as the Rotary is.
        • 4 Years Ago
        My point is that the headlights could still be hidden to enable interesting styling directions while not being "flip up". Ever seen a 69 Pontiac GTO?
        • 4 Years Ago
        If they somehow created a new, awesome way to incorporate hidden headlights I would love that. The first gen RX-7's lights look a bit dated but the 2nd and 3rd gen's have kept on looking amazing on those cars. It just doesn't flow with a lot of design nowadays. That said, flip up headlights only came about because they were inspired by the 60s cars with lights hidden behind the grills so why not bring it back again in a new way?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Flip up headlights will almost certainly never be part of any auto makers equation, again.

        Many countries have pedestrian safety requirements (like when you hit them with your car) for newer vehicles that would basically never allow flip ups again.

        Sad as I did rather fancy them on the 2nd and 3rd generation RX-7s.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'm dissappointed in all the Japanese car companies...

      The STi is a bloated overmechanical mess, with (from what last I drove) a soggy suspension setup and a more "luxurious" feel - Making me feel like I'm driving a Wannabe BMW then a Subaru.

      The EVO is cheaply made (I should know - I sell them), and although it drives great, it's mass is really a letdown, especially if you step out of an EVO IX and into an X. Again, it's so cheaply made that it really is quite sad - Hard plastics are everywhere.

      The GT-R is an overbloated electronic pig - one of which does not feature an Inline 6 like every GT-R before it, and has sadly begun to lose it's charm, due to the fact that it's no longer "unattainable". The BNR32 was a perfect progression of the GT-R name, where as this one is undeniably different in every single way.

      Toyota has its hopes set high for the triumphant return of the 86 - However, there was a time (1987 anyone?) when their portfolio consisted of Supra, Celica, MR2, and AE86 -All very sport influenced cars, with 3/4 of them being RWD, and the other FWD available in AWD. Now Toyota is stuck in such a downhill battle, against itself of all companies, due to reliability issues and the stagnate that they're sold to people with no passion whatsoever for driving.

      Honda really has a long way to go to even go back to what they were in 2000.. a refreshing awakening as to how to produce solid cars. You could have bought an Integra Type R, an S2000, or an NSX if you headed down to your local Acura/Honda dealership. Now, you're forced to consider whether you would want an ungainly CR-Z Hybrid "CRX Wannabe" or an Accord Crosstour which looks like it made love with an Aztek.

      And last, but not least, Mazda. Mazda has been rumored to have been developing a successor to the last 2002 Mazda RX-7 E-FD3S Spirit RB for a long time now - With nary a result in sight. They build the MazdaSpeed3; No dout a good car, but wreaking too much torquesteer, and a face that only a mother could love. The RX-8 now has a spongy ride, and without the aid of forced induction, really is hard to get riding in the first place, what with an anemic amount of torque on tap.

      So there - We have 3 cars on tap from Japanese manufacturers (I won't count the 375,000 Dollar lease only LF-A: It seems just a little too exorbiant to be a DD) that could count as daily driving sports cars. Yet if we were to go back to only 15 years ago in the American Market we had all these:

      Toyota Supra JZA80
      Toyota MR2
      Mazda RX-7
      Acura NSX
      Nissan 240SX

      This tiny list alone, dated back 15 years, is much more then we have today.

      Dear Japanese Car Manufacturers:

      Can't you look at the past, even for a moment, to consider your future here with us enthusiasts?
        • 4 Years Ago
        I've heard of the N54 Problems, but don't discount the 2.0 Litre MIVEC 4's problems either - it has many.

        I can say, that every car has wear and tear, and how you drive it affects how long it lives. I don't like selling cars per say... In fact, I hate it - with a passion.

        I'd much rather write articles on them, however, finding a job doing this, even with 2 years of University under my belt, seems very slim, so for now, I'm forced to voice my opinion, and sell cars making very little money.

        Oh the life of a car enthusiast haha.
        • 4 Years Ago
        The LFA is japan first super car and major props to Toyota & Lexus for producing it when no other manufactures from Japan has the balls to build such a extraordinary super car. The build quality, technology and development behind the LFA alone destroys the rest.

        Toyota is making a move towards performance... something Honda cant say. Toyota is even building the GSF 500+ hp a M5 fighting sedan. I'm tired of seeing little Japanese cars like civics's, evo and whateva kids play with. Toyota and Lexus are stepping into an uncharted area where the Japaneses dare have not gone before.. this excite me more then any little Type R or EVO sedan. So bro to Toyota and Lexus for taking Japanese autos into a different playing field.

        This is extends to car such as the Lexus LS600h.. that car give RR a run for their money and show japan can run with the best.

        Nissan is second behind Toyota when it comes to this... but the rest ( Honda, Mazda etc ) are all falling behind.

        • 4 Years Ago
        Did you forget about the 400+ German fighting ISF ? And Lexus F-Sport Line parts and F-Sport Cars ?


        And you should count the LFA no matter how much it cost you know why? Because it represent Japan (Lexus & Toyota) and what they are made of... so the fact your pushing it too the side is very disrespectful. Its a very unique and rare car and deserves its respect.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Well since you brought up the 335i.

        Since you're a sales and seem to know your stuff, I'd think you also know the problems that are plaguing N54(which powers 335i/135i/Z4 sDrive 3.5i etc) engined customers. The little issue of HPFP failure and causing engine to stop working. If you believe that failure is simply not a great deal and still wants to say the 335i is better than the EvoX, hey that's what that pretty interior is for, so the wait for the tow truck is that much more tolerable, right?

        • 4 Years Ago
        I thought everybody knew the Evo was based on the econocar Lancer, and before that it was based on the Mirage - but those Evos we never got in the states.

        Never the less it seems silly to me to get into a low 30's to 40's car based on a 15 to 20 thousand dollar car and expect to get top notch luxury car interior quality ALONG WITH the Brembos, the Recaros, the Momo steering wheel, oh yeah, and the turbo engine AWD, reinforced chassis, and upgraded suspension. I'm a bit biased though, but I've yet to see a car out Evo the Evo for less money, as in deliver the same or more performance or potential but yet offer the best of everything else as far as interior quality.

        SUVs and the economy made the Japanese run for greener pastures and give up on the GT market. Nobody REALLY wants 55-65K Supras, 3000GTs, and RX-7s to reappear because nobody that REALLY wants them can afford them, and they aren't building cars just to rot on dealer lots for most of us to hopefully pick up used 2-3 years later for half there MSRP or less. The GT-R has set the standard and I don't think any Japan automaker is going to want to develop a car using one of those top dog nameplates that's going to come out and be punked by the GT-R (which isn't selling very well). So expect 70K+ for any good Japan GT if their pride gets the better of them. The RX-7 could maybe set the 370Z in its sights, but I think that is what has held the car up for so long. Do they want a range topping all conquering car? Or will the concede defeat to the GT-R and just bring a simple N/A 2 seater to the scene?
        • 4 Years Ago
        I have to agree, the late 80's early 90's were a great time for Japanese sports cars, today, not so much.
        • 4 Years Ago
        While I can sympathize with your sentiments (not that it hasn't been beaten to death already) but I have a few counterpoints:
        -What's so good about "unattainability"? If the I-6 Skylines had been available here we'd have collectively benefitted more so than what is the reality - fanboys drooling but not driving (for the most part).

        -You mention 2000 as the golden year when all these awesome cars were being sold at the dealerships. Don't forget that 2000 was the year of the dot-com crash. If car companies felt people were going to probably stop buying awesome cars that don't exist solely to carry the groceries, you can be sure they were going to stop making them.

        -Unfortunately the FWD madness that was precipitated by the fall of that era you speak of has massive momentum. Even if things were looking up, the companies would rather milk the platforms they already have rather than trying something new. GM failing with the Kappa surely didn't help matters any.

        -Mazda for a while was under the helm of Ford (especially after that crash), who probably didn't consider anything like the RX-7 to be of any value.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I bought an RX-7 GSL new back in '84 and I loved that car. True, the interior materials were cheap and the bodies were prone to rusting here in the Northeast, but that was a fun vehicle at a very affordable price.

      I put 120,000 miles on it before letting it go. I would love to see something closer to that than was the (fugly) RX-8 and even some of the later model RX-7s.

      Sadly, it will probably sell for $35-$40K thus making it a reach for the folks who might best enjoy it.
      • 4 Years Ago
      That RX-7 still looks totally modern. Mazda could bring it back just like that and it wouldn't look dated.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Monti is more a potential Hyundai coupe customer.
      • 4 Years Ago
      The picture happens to be my computer background! The Spirit R was pure sex on wheels.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Good story.
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